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Program in Global Health and Health Policy


João G. Biehl, Co-Director

Thomas E. Shenk, Co-Director

Executive Committee

Elizabeth M. Armstrong, Woodrow Wilson School, Sociology

João G. Biehl, Anthropology

Janet M. Currie, Woodrow Wilson School, Economics

Bryan T. Grenfell, Woodrow Wilson School, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Evan Lieberman, Politics

Christina H. Paxson, Woodrow Wilson School, Economics

Deborah A. Prentice, Psychology

Daniel I. Rubenstein, Ecology and Environmental Biology

Thomas E. Shenk, Molecular Biology

Winston O. Soboyejo, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Associated Faculty

Angela N. H. Creager, History 

Elizabeth A. Davis, Anthropology

Lynn W. Enquist, Molecular Biology, Princeton Neuroscience Institute 

Zemer Gitai, Molecular Biology 

Noreen Goldman, Woodrow Wilson School, Demography

Andrea L. Graham, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology 

John Groves, Chemistry

Katja Guenther, History

Elizabeth Harman, Philosophy, University Center for Human Values 

Simon A. Levin, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology 

A. James Link, Chemical and Biological Engineering 

Manuel Llinás, Molecular Biology, Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics 

Adel Mahmoud, Woodrow Wilson School, Molecular Biology 

Celeste M. Nelson, Chemical and Biological Engineering 

Robert K. Prud'homme, Chemical and Biological Engineering 

Joshua D. Rabinowitz, Chemistry, Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics

Georges Reniers, Woodrow Wilson School, Sociology 

Leon Rosenberg, Molecular Biology 

Carolyn M. Rouse, Anthropology, African American Studies 

Eldar B. Shafir, Psychology, Woodrow Wilson School 

Harold T. Shapiro, Woodrow Wilson School, Economics 

Lee M. Silver, Molecular Biology, Woodrow Wilson School 

Peter Singer, University Center for Human Values 

Erik J. Sorensen, Chemistry

Keith Wailoo, History, Woodrow Wilson School

Everett Y. Zhang, East Asian Studies 

Sits with Committee

Glenn Cummings, Office of the Dean of the College

Kristina Graff, Woodrow Wilson School

Peter Locke, Woodrow Wilson School

The interdepartmental Program in Global Health and Health Policy enables undergraduates to study the determinants, consequences, and patterns of disease across societies; the role of medical technologies and interventions in health improvements; and the economic, political, and social factors that shape domestic and global public health policy.

Admission to the Program

The program is open to undergraduates of all disciplines. Students apply to the program in the second semester of their sophomore year and are accepted if they have met the following prerequisites: submission of an essay describing the rationale for completing the certificate and plans for the junior and senior years; completion of an approved basic science course (EEB 210, EEB 211, MOL 101, MOL 214, MOL 215, or ISC 231-234) by the end of sophomore year; completion of an approved statistics course (ECO 202, EEB 355, ORF 245, POL 345, PSY 251, or SOC 301) by the end of sophomore year; a minimum grade of B in each of the prerequisite courses and a minimum GPA requirement of 3.3 overall; and a demonstrated commitment to the field of global health through completion of a health-related internship, volunteer work, campus activities, intellectual commitment, and/or community service.

Students who have placed out of departmental requirements and/or introductory-level courses with Advance Placement (AP) credit have the option of taking higher-level courses in lieu of the standard science and statistics prerequisites, with program permission.

Advanced science course options: EEB 309, EEB 314, EEB 328

Advanced statistics course options: ECO 302, ECO 312, ORF 405, SOC 404

Students who have not met the prerequisites can apply to the program; however, waivers of the prerequisites are granted only in extraordinary circumstances. Applicants should explain in their essay why they have not met the prerequisites and how they plan to address the issue in their future studies.

Program Requirements

To obtain the certificate, students must complete the following requirements:

Completion of GHP 350 and GHP 351 by the end of junior year.

Four additional health-related electives approved by the global health and health policy program, at least one of which is in an area outside of the student's department of concentration. Three of the electives must be completed during the junior and senior years.

An approved research-focused internship or independent research project during the summer between the junior and senior years.

A senior thesis written in the student's department of concentration that addresses or relates to global health and health policy in an interdisciplinary manner.

Certificate of Proficiency

Students who fulfill the requirements of the program receive a certificate of proficiency in global health and health policy upon graduation.

Related Courses in Global Health and Health Policy. Courses that may be used to satisfy program requirements may be found on the program's website. If other courses in global health and/or health policy are offered, these may be added to the list of approved courses with program permission.


GHP 350 Critical Perspectives on Global Health and Health Policy (also WWS 491/ANT 491)   Fall SA

Introduces disease and healthcare problems worldwide and examines efforts to address them. Via an interdisciplinary approach, identifies the main actors, institutions, knowledge, and values at play in the "global health system", and explores the environmental, social, political, and economic factors that shape patterns and variations in disease and health across societies. Topics include: development and governance of disease; technological change and public health; human rights and social justice; measuring health outcomes; and the shifting role of states, civil society, and public-private partnerships in healthcare delivery. Two lectures. J. Biehl

GHP 351 Epidemiology (also WWS 494)   Spring

Focuses on the distribution and determinants of disease. Diverse methodological approaches for measuring health status, disease occurrence, and the association between risk factors and health outcomes will be presented via classic and contemporary studies of chronic and infectious illness and disease outbreaks. Emphasis on: causal inference, study design and sampling, bias and confounding, the generalizability of research, health policy and research ethics. Prerequisite: an approved basic statistics course. Two 90-minute lectures, one preceptorial. J. Amon

GHP 400 Seminar in Global Health and Health Policy (also MOL 499)   Spring

This course will examine four major topics in global health. Each topic will span two or three class meetings. The first session on a topic will feature a presentation by an expert invited from outside the University. Following the expert presentation, student discussants will lead a question/answer/commentary period. During the second and third class meetings for each topic, students will explore elements of the expert's presentation in greater depth as well as additional aspects relating to the topic of discussion. The student presentations will each be followed by student discussants. A. Mahmoud, T. Shenk